Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Br J Surg. 2007 Oct;94(10):1209-15.

Older women with operable breast cancer are less likely to have surgery.

Author information

  • 1School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work, University of Manchester, Withington Hospital, Manchester, UK.



Older women are less likely to receive standard management for breast cancer than younger postmenopausal women. Whether differences in general health explain variations in the rates of surgery is not known.


In this prospective cohort study, 76 women aged 65 years or more attending breast units in Greater Manchester completed a survey measuring functional status (Elderly Population Health Status Survey's Activity of Daily Living), generic health status (Short Form 12) and health-related quality of life (European Organization for Research on Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire C30). Case-note review assessed co-morbidity (Charlson Index) and management. Primary surgery for operable breast cancer was investigated using logistic regression.


A Charlson Index of 1 or more did not predict the use of surgery (P = 0.363). However, for each point increase on the 1-4 scale indicating worsening functional status, the odds of having surgery decreased by 16 times (odds ratio 0.063). The odds of a woman of 80 years or more having surgery decreased by a factor of 44 (odds ratio 0.023) compared with women aged 65-79 years, accounting for co-morbidity, functional status, pretreatment stage, social deprivation and type of hospital.


Older women were less likely to have surgery for operable breast cancer than younger women, even after accounting for differences in general health and co-morbidity.

Copyright (c) 2007 British Journal of Surgery Society Ltd.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Wiley
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk